World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Law of Washington

 

Law of Washington

The law of Washington consists of several levels, including constitutional, statutory, regulatory and case law, as well as local ordinances. The Revised Code of Washington forms the general statutory law.

Sources

The Constitution of Washington is the foremost source of state law. Legislation is enacted by the Washington State Legislature, published in the Laws of Washington, and codified in the Revised Code of Washington. State agency regulations (sometimes called administrative law) are published in the Washington State Register and codified in the Washington Administrative Code. Washington's legal system is based on common law, which is interpreted by case law through the decisions of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals, which are published in the Washington Reports and Washington Appellate Reports, respectively. Counties, cities, and towns may also promulgate local ordinances.

Constitution

The foremost source of state law is the Constitution of Washington. The Washington Constitution in turn is subordinate to the Constitution of the United States, which is the supreme law of the land.

Legislation

Pursuant to the state constitution, the Washington State Legislature has enacted legislation. Its session laws are published in the Laws of Washington, which in turn have been codified, compiled, and/or consolidated in the Revised Code of Washington (RCW).[1] Both are published by the Washington State Statute Law Committee and the Washington State Code Reviser which it employs and supervises.[2][3]

Regulations

Pursuant to certain statutes, state agencies have promulgated regulations, also known as administrative law. The Washington State Register (WSR) is a biweekly publication that includes notices of proposed and expedited rules, emergency and permanently adopted rules, public meetings, requests for public input, notices of rules review, executive orders of the Governor, court rules, summary of attorney general opinions, juvenile disposition standards, and the state maximum interest rate.[4][5] The Washington Administrative Code (WAC) codifies or compiles the regulations and arranges them by subject or agency, and is updated twice a month.[4][5] There are also many agencies with quasi-judicial authority to hold hearings and make decisions.[4] The Washington State Register is published by the Statute Law Committee,[6] and the Washington Administrative Code is compiled and published under the authority of its Code Reviser.[7][3]

Case law

The legal system of Washington is based on the common law. Like all U.S. states except Louisiana, Washington has a reception statute providing for the "reception" of English law. All statutes, regulations, and ordinances are subject to judicial review. Pursuant to common law tradition, the courts of Washington have developed a large body of case law through the decisions of the Washington Supreme Court and Washington Court of Appeals.

The decisions of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals are published in the Washington Reports and Washington Appellate Reports, respectively.[8] Both are published by LexisNexis, while slip opinions are published on the Internet.[9] The Reporter of Decisions is the constitutional officer of the Supreme Court that prepares the decisions and opinions of the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals for publication in the official court reports.[9] Cases from Washington appellate courts are also reported in the unofficial Pacific Reporter.[8] From 1854 to 1889, opinions of the territorial Supreme Court were published in the three volumes of the Washington Territory Reports.[9]

Local ordinances

The legislative bodies of counties, cities, and towns may adopt ordinances, resolutions, rules, regulations, motions, and orders, violations of which are punishable by a maximum of 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine, or for a gross misdemeanor one year in jail and a $5,000 fine.[10][11] Alternatively, a legislative body may make an offense a civil infraction, but no city or county may establish a civil penalty for an act that constitutes a crime under state law, nor may it establish a different criminal punishment than that provided by state law for the same act.[10][11] The power of the public to initiate ordinances by petition and to have enacted ordinances referred to the voters are only available in first class cities, code cities, cities or towns organized under the commission plan of government, and home rule counties.[10][12]

All cities and towns are required to publish every ordinance in their official newspaper, although in lieu of publishing an entire ordinance a city or town may publish a summary.[10] Counties must provide advance notice of proposed police or sanitary regulations prior to adoption by the legislative body, and the notice may either set out a copy of the regulation or summarize its content.[10]

See also

Topics

Legislation

Other

References

  1. ^
  2. ^ RCW 1.08.015; Chapter 44.20 RCW.
  3. ^ a b
  4. ^ a b c
  5. ^ a b
  6. ^ RCW 1.08.110
  7. ^ RCW 34.05.210
  8. ^ a b
  9. ^ a b c
  10. ^ a b c d e
  11. ^ a b
  12. ^

External links

  • Washington State Constitution from the Washington State Legislative Service Center
  • Revised Code of Washington from the Washington State Legislative Service Center
  • Revised Code of Washington archive from the Washington State Legislative Service Center
  • Washington Administrative Code from the Washington State Legislative Service Center
  • Washington Administrative Code archive from the Washington State Legislative Service Center
  • Session laws from the Washington State Code Reviser
  • Washington State Register from the Washington State Code Reviser
  • Washington Supreme Court and Court of Appeals opinions from the Washington State Administrative Office of the Courts
  • Washington state court decisions from the Municipal Research and Services Center
  • Washington county codes from the Municipal Research and Services Center
  • Washington city codes from the Municipal Research and Services Center
  • Washington special purpose district and administrative codes from the Municipal Research and Services Center
  • Local ordinance codes from Public.Resource.Org


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.